Northern Ontario Plant Database
Lonicera canadensis W.Bartram ex Marshall
En: Canada fly honeysuckle
Caprifoliaceae (Honeysuckle Family)
General: A perennial, erect, deciduous shrub, to 1.5 m tall. Young stems green to purplish, smooth; older woody stems gray or brown, with shredding bark.
Leaves: Opposite, simple, pinnately-veined, short-petiolate (>1 cm long). Leaf blades elliptic, oblong, or broadly ovate, 2.5–9.5 cm long, 2.5–5 cm wide, thin (membranaceous); hairy when young, becoming smooth when mature (glabrate); upper leaf surface green, lower surface paler; leaf bases tapering (cuneate) in upper leaves, rounded to cordate in lower leaves; apex pointed (acute) to blunt (obtuse); margins ciliate.
Flowers: Bisexual, borne in nodding, long-stalked pairs in leaf axils; peduncles 2–3 cm long. Calyx minute; corolla greenish-yellow to pale yellow, 1.2–1.8 cm long, funnelform, with a prominent gibbous bulge near the base, clearly visible on the outer edge of each flower pair. Corolla with 5 lobes less than half the length of the tube; stamens 5, attached to the inside of the corolla base (epipetalous); the single pistil has an inferior ovary and a long style with a capitate stigma. The outer surface of the corolla and ovary are glabrous. Flowers bloom in mid to late spring, with the expanding leaves.
Fruit: Smooth, red, ovoid berries, in divergent pairs, the berries fused only at the base. Fruits mature in mid to late summer.
Habitat and Range: Moist forests, swamps, wet thickets. The Canada fly honeysuckle is native to northeastern North America. In Ontario, it occurs only as far north as 50� N latitude (Soper & Heimburger 1982).
Similar Species: The only other shrub honeysuckle native to Ontario that resembles the Canada fly honeysuckle is Lonicera oblongifolia, the swamp fly honeysuckle, which lacks the ciliate leaf margins of the former species, has oblong to obovate leaves that taper gradually to the short petiole. The outer surface of the corolla is pubescent; berries are orange to red, but each pair is fused to at least the middle of the fruit, while Lonicera canadensis has a glabrous corolla and divergent pairs of berries, fused only at the base.
Internet images: The Lonicera canadensis webpage from the Connecticut Botanical Society.
This beautiful image of Lonicera canadensis is from the website Wildflowers and Plants of the Upper Ottawa Valley.
This webpage of Lonicera canadensis, with images that clearly show the gibbous base of the flowers and the ciliate leaf margins, is from the Ontario Wildflowers website.
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